Community Spotlight: Bennington
Nestled within the Green and Taconic Mountains, Bennington is the fifth largest community in the state. Numerous waterways and access to large tracts of forest land originally drew Native Americans to the area for prime fishing and hunting opportunities. Today, residents and visitors continue to take advantage of the areas historical significance and it’s accessibility to nearby urban centers.
Chartered in 1749 by New Hampshire Governor, Benning Wentworth, Old Bennington later became the first area settled within the town’s current boundary. Today, Bennington has approximately 16,000 residents and encompasses 41.7 square miles. It’s close proximity to major markets in New York and Massachusetts allows for greater economic opportunities. Businesses in the area include Energizer Battery, Plasan USA, Bennington Potters, and Transitor. Bennington is also home to Southern Vermont College and Bennington College.
Bennington also has a thriving downtown, complete with shops, numerous dining options, entertainment and lodging. The downtown features specialty shops, governmental and health care offices, banking establishments and the Bennington Free Library. The revitalization of the downtown district has been successful, in large part, due to the Better Bennington Corporation, which was established to maintain downtown Bennington as the heart of commercial and cultural opportunities.
Residents of Bennington are fortunate to have Green Mountain Community Network, a private, nonprofit organization that provides safe and efficient transportation services throughout Bennington County. Established in 1985, the service offers a variety of low-cost programs to suit the needs of school children, the elderly and general commuters.
Recreational opportunities, including access to the popular Long Trail, also attract residents and visitors to the Bennington area. Fishing, hiking, hunting and skiing are just some of the great ways to take advantage of what Bennington has to offer.